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Using Data and Modeling to Understand the Risks of In-Person Education

Educational Objective
To identify the key insights or developments described in this article
1 Credit CME

Naimark and colleagues1 use a simulation model calibrated to the COVID-19 pandemic in Ontario, Canada, to estimate the association of opening kindergarten through grade 12 (K-12) schools with total infections across the city. They projected that schools opening was associated with a much smaller impact than other community-based nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs). This research adds to a growing body of literature addressing the risk of COVID-19 in K-12 schools and the association of in-person school with the trajectory of the pandemic.2

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Article Information

Published: March 31, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.4619

Open Access: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the CC-BY License. © 2021 Ciaranello A et al. JAMA Network Open.

Corresponding Author: Andrea Ciaranello, MD, MPH, Division of Infectious Disease, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 100 Cambridge St, Rm 1670, Boston, MA 02114 (aciaranello@partners.org).

Conflict of Interest Disclosures: None reported.

References
1.
Naimark  D , Mishra  S , Barrett  K ,  et al.  Simulation-based estimation of SARS-CoV-2 infections associated with school closures and community-based nonpharmaceutical interventions in Ontario, Canada.   JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4(3):e213793. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.3793Google Scholar
2.
Alvarez  K , Becker  J , Bhattacharyya  R ,  et al; Massachusetts General Hospital. COVID-19 school and community resource library. Published online February 13, 2021. Accessed February 25, 2021. https://globalhealth.massgeneral.org/covidlibrary.pdf
3.
Ali  MM , West  K , Teich  JL , Lynch  S , Mutter  R , Dubenitz  J .  Utilization of mental health services in educational setting by adolescents in the United States.   J Sch Health. 2019;89(5):393-401. doi:10.1111/josh.12753PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
4.
Gaffney  AW , Himmelstein  D , Woolhandler  S .  Risk for severe COVID-19 illness among teachers and adults living with school-aged children.   Ann Intern Med. 2020;173(9):765-767. doi:10.7326/M20-5413PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
5.
Oster  E ; School Superintendents Association; National Association of Secondary School Principals; National Association of Elementary School Principals. COVID-19 school response dashboard. Published February 14, 2021. Accessed February 25, 2021. https://covidschooldashboard.com/
6.
Honein  MA , Barrios  LC , Brooks  JT .  Data and policy to guide opening schools safely to limit the spread of SARS-CoV-2 infection.   JAMA. 2021;325(9):823-824. doi:10.1001/jama.2021.0374PubMedGoogle ScholarCrossref
7.
Massachusetts Department of Education. Coronavirus/COVID-19: pooled testing in K-12 schools. Published February 24, 2021. Accessed February 25, 2021. https://www.doe.mass.edu/covid19/pooled-testing/
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